Basic cable has finally caught Emmy's eye, with Turner Network Television,
Comedy Central, USA Network and Sci Fi Channel all taking home statues during
the 55th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards on Fox Sunday night.
That's compared with last year, when only FX won a primetime Emmy in a major
category during the main telecast, and TNT and A&E Network also each won one
Premiere cable channel Home Box Office remained the Emmy champ, but barely,
with eight awards.
Among the broadcast networks, CBS was the surprise, winning seven awards and
leading all broadcast networks even though NBC went in with the most nods. NBC
came in second among the "Big Six," winning four (and third overall, down from
second last year), while ABC left with only one award, for Wayne Brady's
improvisational comedy in Whose Line Is It Anyway?.
The night was marked by upsets, with NBC's The West Wing winning
outstanding drama series for the fourth year in a row, making it the drama champ
every year the show has been on the air. Wing had been considered erratic
in its fourth season, suffering declining ratings and the departure of creator
and writer Aaron Sorkin this past spring.
Although it was again the most-nominated show, HBO's Six Feet Under
brought home no awards during the night.
The win of CBS' Everybody Loves Raymond for best comedy was not a
surprise, with the show considered the front-runner entering the broadcast,
although it had been nominated four times before without winning.
The show took home three other major awards, with Brad Garrett repeating as
best supporting actor in a comedy and Doris Roberts winning her third Emmy for
her role as Raymond's insecure but pushy mother.
Whether Raymond will come back for another season remains unclear,
with cast members Roberts, Peter Boyle and Patricia Heaton enthusiastic about
another year but star Ray Romano and executive producer Phil Rosenthal still
saying Sunday night that they weren't sure.
CBS' The Amazing Race also surprised Emmy, stealing the statue from
the favorite, Fox's American Idol: Search for a Superstar. That helped to
shut out Fox, the broadcast host of this year's awards ceremony.
The lead comedy awards were also both upsets, with Will & Grace's
Debra Messing taking home the statue for best actress in a comedy series for the
first time after three previous nominations.
Tony Shalhoub won for USA's Monk, a particularly big surprise after
people wondered whether the show should be nominated as a comedy or a drama.
As expected, The Sopranos' James Gandolfini and Edie Falco won for
best lead actor and actress in a drama, while the HBO show also won for
Including last weekend's Creative Arts Awards, HBO led the Emmy pack, winning
18 statues in all. CBS was close behind with 16, knocking NBC to third with
ABC took home nine, while PBS and Fox tied for seven, with neither bringing
home an award Sunday night.
TNT won six overall, four on Emmy night, powered by William H. Macy's
made-for-TV movie, Door to Door. Comedy Central was close behind with a
total of three, two of those for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.
A&E, Cartoon Network, Discovery Channel, Sci Fi and USA all won two Emmys
each, with Sci Fi and USA
each winning one award during the primetime